A runner with an appetite for adventure!

Weekend Getaway: Monterey Playground January 26, 2014

Filed under: California — Kelocity @ 4:11 am
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On our last day in Monterey, we kept it simple and headed to a playground so Adele could burn off some steam before being in the car for five hours. After some googling, we settled on the Dennis the Menace Playground. It did not disappoint.
It was built decades ago so it didn’t fall into the traditional parks you see nowadays. They just don’t make em’ like they used to. Check out this slide! (hey, adults can play too!)

And look at this one! It was a ‘roller’ slide. 


Our plan to tucker Adele out worked. She was fried after a couple of hours of climbing, sliding and running.

She slept for 3 of the 5 hours on the way back to LA. I spent the rest of the ride in the back seat with her reading, singing and playing. (And maybe some Elmo watching as well… shhh! I’ll never be one of THOSE parents. haha)

Here’s a video of Adele in the backseat (note: it’s dark, just listen!) All she wanted was to watch Elmo and mom singing was NOT going to cut it this time. ha.


Weekend Getaway: Monterey Butterflies January 25, 2014

Filed under: California — Kelocity @ 4:51 am
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After our full day at the Aquarium, we all slept great and woke up ready for more! Our room was comfortable with a king bed, and plenty of room for a pack n play. All three nights we were there, we put Adele down around 8pm and turned out the lights. Then Irving and I sat in bed and read on our phones/laptops in the dark for another hour before passing out. We logged a lot of sleep while we were up there, it was great!

We headed back to the Black Bear Diner for breakfast (it’s THAT good!) I had an amazing biscuit with a side of fruit. Adele had some ham and eggs with berries and toast on the side.

Our destination for the morning was the Natural History Museum.

We thought the Butterfly Exhibit was there, but turns out it was actually a few blocks down. Before we left, we explored the ‘backyard’ of the museum and found this fun nest to play in!

I love this picture. She’s climbing trees!

We eventually did find the Butterflies! The Monarchs love the trees and weather in this particular neighborhood and come for a visit for a few months each year.

They had a simple trail where you could walk down and back and observe all the pretty butterflies.
The tip-toes!
I love her free spirit and love of the outdoors. She was running so fast I thought she would trip!

The butterflies were awesome, there were SO many!


We had a great time looking at the “Utter-fries” =)

After our fun morning, we headed back to the hotel so Adele could take a nap. We took advantage of our built-in babysitters and snuck out for an afternoon date! First, we headed to Lover’s Point to climb some rocks and watch the waves. It felt like the old, adventurous ‘Kelley and Irving’.


After that, we had lunch together, walked around a mall, got some Coldstone ice cream and then say American Hustle in the theater! It was SO wonderful to get away for a few hours. We had a blast. It was the perfect date!


Weekend Getaway: Monterey Aquarium January 24, 2014

Filed under: animals,California — Kelocity @ 1:02 pm
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Over the long weekend, we trekked five hours up the coast of California to the seaside town of Monterey. We met up with Irving’s mom and grandmother while we were there. It was three days of fish, ocean, family and relaxation. We had a lot of fun.

First up on our list of things to do was of course the Monterey Aquarium. It’s a must see, we spent ALL day there.


We knew Adele would like it, but we had no idea she would LOVE it. She had her face plastered to the tanks, we had to peel her away to move on to the next one.
Her silhouette pigtails are the CUTEST!
Hey fishie! Come here!

We briefly let her play in the touch pool, but she was more interested in watching than touching.


The aquarium is right on the bay, so you can go outside and catch a glimpse at the wildlife out there as well. She was mesmerized by the waves. She kept saying “Water! Water! Water!”

But we eventually made it back inside to watch the Penguins!

This was a ‘beach’ exhibit with lots of birds on the sand. She really liked this one.


Once it was apparent it was nap time for the little (and lunchtime for the adults), we headed back to our hotel. (Shoes not required…the shoes and socks came off one by one on the ride back to the car!)

Adele took a nice nap and Irving, Nini and I snuck off for a nice lunch at the Black Bear Diner. (Thanks for babysitting Adele, Julie!) When she woke up, she was in a great mood, so we headed back to the Aquarium to take fully advantage of our tickets!

First stop was a visit back to see the waves!
Outside, they have an exhibit where you can stand under a glass wall and a wave will ‘crash’ over you. You never get wet of course, but Adele thought it was HILARIOUS. She got scared and then giggled. Over and over.

Back inside, we checked out the Jellyfish exhibits. I remembered these from when I first visited here in 2002(?)

You could even make a drawing and it would ‘swim away’ like a Jellyfish would. Irving’s quite the artist!

We spent the rest of our time there in the toddler playground area. They had a slide and bouncy things to climb on. And also a fish tank tunnel with little Nemos!

That night, we all went for Chinese Food (really really good Chinese food!) and then called it a night. We were all pretty tired. It was a full, wonderful day.

Stay tuned for more photos of the rest of our weekend!


Passport to the Parks August 9, 2012

Filed under: California,Yosemite — Kelocity @ 1:58 pm
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YAY! It’s official!!! Adele has her first passport! But not the kind you’re thinking of (although I can’t WAIT to get her the real thing!) This weekend we bought her the official Passport to America’s National Parks!
I’m not sure why she’s making that face, inside, she was SUPER excited!

Almost all of our National Parks have a unique stamp that you can collect in your Passport Book. Hopefully in her lifetime, she can fill that baby up with lots of stamps! Her first one was Yosemite!


On Sunday, we checked out of our hotel and made the drive back in the Valley Floor to do a tram tour of the major sights.

But first, we walked around Yosemite Village and checked out the visitor’s center.

I’m a total nerd and again got giddy with excitement to have Adele there. When we were inside, we saw a few little kids getting sworn into the Junior Ranger program. They were SO cute! Someday she will be a Junior Ranger too and pledge to protect our beautiful parks. Ahhh I can’t wait!

They had a neat 3D display so we could see what the Valley Floor looks like from above. Awesome! (I know, total nerd.)

Then it was time for our tram ride!

It was a two hour tour that gave us the history of the park, and lots of other great information about the rocks and animals inside.



See that giant rock cliff up there?

We spotted a few climbers way up there! Insane, right?!

It was hot and sunny, but Adele was cozy inside the carrier. We kept her well shaded and she slept the whole time. She’s a champ.


It’s crazy how lush and dry everything is in the summer. Apparently in the winter and spring, the river can really overflow.

Hard to believe the whole valley floods almost every year!

One of the spots where Ansel Adams took some of his famous pictures.

We were too scared to expose Adele to the sun, but someday we’ll remind her she was there!


Another view of Half Dome, way in the distance!

So lucky to have such a beautiful park in our country.

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It was a great tour. Well worth the trip. We only scratched the surface on things to do in Yosemite, but it was a great overview and I can’t wait to come back again someday.

And with that, I leave you with a final picture of Half Dome. Incredible.


Those are some big trees… August 7, 2012

Filed under: California,Family,Yosemite — Kelocity @ 4:41 am
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On Friday morning, Irving went out to golf with the groom and his friends at the Wawona Golf Course. So Grandma Julie, Adele and I took the shuttle bus to the Mariposa Grove to see the giant Sequoia trees! I was giddy with excitement!

I strapped the sleepy baby to me in the carrier and did my best to keep her out of the shade. The Mariposa Grove has an upper and a lower section. We just did the short .8 mile trail (1.6 miles total).

Adele slept through the whole hike! But I narrated along the way: “Look at that big tree! Did you see the squirrel? etc..” She loved it, obviously!

I seriously waited my whole life to have a kid that I could take to parks like this and explore the great outdoors. I always loved nature walks and learning about the animals and the history of places. I’m so excited that the time is finally here! I feel like my life is just beginning since I get to experience all this cool stuff all over again with Adele.

The Sequoias were beautiful. We took a tour led by a park ranger to learn about where they came from, how they grow and how the park protects them.

The roots of these giants are only 2-4 feet deep! Isn’t that crazy! Here is a picture of the roots of a tree that fell in the 1800s! (Fun Fact: Sequoias have a chemical in them that makes them nearly impossible to decay! They will eventually, but it takes decades longer than a normal tree!)


IMG_4749 IMG_4753

Why, hello there, big tree!

I was laughing to myself that maybe someday when we take Adele back here, she might whine and complain, “But mom, why did we have to come all the way out here on vacation to just see some big treeeees?” Hopefully she’ll learn to appreciate them for what they are! And if all else fails, at least they sell ice cream in the gift shop, right? LOL

Also spotted on our walk… a Deer! (Actually a few deer, but this is the only one I snapped a picture of!) Thankfully we didn’t see any bears.

Living in LA, it really is something special to stand at the base of so many gorgeous trees reaching towards the sun.

Finally we reached our destination: a Sequoia named The Grizzly Giant. It’s one of the biggest trees in the world.

The branches on that bad boy were as big as regular trees!

Adele did great on our hike. When we got back, she was nice and hungry and I fed her on the Adirondack chairs on our porch. IMG_4770

Then it was time for some playtime and a nap. Grandma took over and I actually went down to the restaurant and dined by myself on the patio. It was awesome! Can’t remember the last time I could enjoy a meal out by myself! It was so nice! (They even served me Pink Lemonade… on the house! Score!)

It was such a perfect day. So far, one of my favorite weekend getaways to date!

(Stay tuned for two more posts Yosemite themed posts this week!)


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